GORKHA ADIVASI POLITICAL SIGNIFICANCE: Asok solution to set-up riddle – making a riddle out of a mole hill, classic case of the “tail trying to wag the dog” of Darjeeling District & Dooars combined – and that too unconstitutionally, thus the well timed delay tactics ?!!
FROM THE TELEGRAPH CORRESPONDENT
Siliguri, Dec. 5: Asok Bhattacharya today said the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha should agree to hold elections to urban and rural local bodiesin the hills so that the proposed interim set-up could be run by people chosen on the basis of proportionate representation.
“We would like to reiterate that it is imperativeto hold polls to panchayats and four municipalities in the hills to know whom people support. If the Morcha is confident about its support base, it should not shy away from the elections,” Bengal municipal and urban development affairs minister said here.
“Once the polls are conducted, talks can be held if people can be picked on the basis of proportionate representation to run the interim authority — as is done in the case of Rajya Sabha (where members are elected by state legislators).”
Observers said the minister was taking the middle path as the Morcha was determined to form the interim set-up with nominated members, while the state wanted elected representatives. The chief minister had made it clear last week that the state was not ready to consent to the interim set-up unless elections were held to the authority and the local bodies.
Told about Bhattacharya’s comments, Roshan Giri, the general secretary of the Morcha, said: “The demarcation of panchayats, panchayat samitis, blocks and municipalities was done on the basis of records of 1971.
“As there have been substantial changes in terms of population and administrative jurisdiction of areas after 1971, we want the government to start a delimitation process, which may result in the division of existing blocks and the formation of new panchayats. We have already submitted a detail report on this to the Centre during the tripartite talks.”
Minister floats formula to break Darjeeling hill deadlock – an “unconstitutional” 2 tier election system only and conveniently ignoring the April 2009 Lok Sabha Election results entirely ?!!
From The Hindu
SILIGURI, December 5, 2010 (PTI): With the Gorkha Janamukti Morcha set to launch a fresh movement in Darjeeling from tomorrow, State Urban Development Minister Asoke Bhattacharya proposed a formula to resolve the deadlock over modalities for substituting the existing hill council by an interim set-up.
With elections to the local bodies in the hills long overdue, Mr. Bhattacharya, who represents Siliguri constituency, has suggested linking proportionate representation of the parties to the results of the panchayat and the municipal polls.
The setting up of an interim set-up for two years as a substitute for the existing Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council (DGHC) with greater autonomy and power, was resolved at the recent political level tripartite meeting in New Delhi where GJM chief Bimal Gurung was present.
The GJM is demanding setting up of the interim council by December 20.
Although a solution was found to give greater autonomy to the hills without dividing the State after a series of tripartite talks, its implementation hit a bottleneck as the West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharya was in favour of a democratic process to set up the interim council.
However, the GJM was against holding any election and wanted to form the set-up with its nominated members only.
The GJM has announced closure of all government and non-government offices from tomorrow and a 48-hour bandh in the Darjeeling hills from December 21 if the set-up was not in place by December 20.
Mr. Bhattacharya told PTI today that a democratic process would have to be followed as there were other political parties in the hills and the GJM could not be taken to represent the sole authority of the hill people.
“If they were unwilling to go for polls to form the set-up they could go for election for the two-tier (*?!! Why not three tier as is constitutional ?!!) panchayet and municipal polls which were long due. On the basis of proportionate result of political parties, the set-up could be formed,” he said.
Elections to the municipal body has not been held for the last three years since the GJM came to the scene.
When asked whether it was an official proposal, Mr. Bhattacharya said that it was his “personal proposal” keeping in mind the principle of the Raya Sabha polls.
A party spokesman when contacted said the GJM was not interested to comment on anybody’s personal proposal. “We can discuss it if it comes to us officially,” he added.
Comeback eye on Siliguri – with Naxal chief Kanu Sanyal removed on dubious suicide charges, the commie-congie nexus reaffirmed ?!!
FROM THE TELEGRAPH CORRESPONDENT
Siliguri, Dec. 5: The Congress is eyeing all three Assembly seats of the Siliguri subdivision and will soon begin political activities to consolidate its support base, Darjeeling district president Shankar Malakar said here today.
Since morning, the district Congress office wore a festive look with party supporters dancing to the tunes of music played out by bands, smearing each other with green abirand shouting “Shankar Malakar Zindabad” to celebrate the district president’s comeback.
“Presuming that the Assembly elections will be held in the next few months, my focus will be on the three Assembly seats of the subdivision, — Siliguri, Matigara-Naxalbari and Phansidewa. We have proved our base at the mahakuma parishad and the civic body elections. Now it is the time to prove ourselves (in the Assembly polls) and consolidate the support base,” Malakar said.
The Congress leader said he had led the party in a number of elections and tasted both success and failure. “My attempt will be to take up both macro and micro-level issues, enhance the contact with common people and apprise them of the atrocities of the CPM and vision of the Congress as well as the Congress-Trinamul Congress alliance.”
Malakar’s focus on the three seats assumes significance considering the party’s political base. “Trinamul has some support base in the civic area and in some parts of Bagdogra, while the Congress is strong both in the municipal parts and the rural areas of the subdivision,” an observer said.
Malakar’s reinstatement, Congress workers said, would help augment the party activities in the district. “We are not undermining the qualities of Uday Dubey (the outgoing district chief) but under his leadership regular activities of the Congress had taken a backseat, particularly in rural levels. It was either Youth Congress or Chhatra Parishad members who were running the show with virtually nothing being done by the district leadership,” a worker said.
AND FROM BELOW THE PLAINS OF DARJEELING & DOOARS
School poll heat on CPM MLA – Trinamul accused of Left assault – from the frying pan into the fire ?!!
FROM THE TELEGRAPH CORRESPONDENT
Cooch Behar, Dec. 5: The CPM MLA from Sitalkuchi and several Left Front leaders were beaten up by alleged Trinamul Congress supporters this afternoon after elections to a school committee in Harish Barman’s constituency.
Police burst tear-gas shells and resorted to a lathi-charge to disperse the mob as CPM and Forward Bloc leaders sat on a dharna in front of Sitalkuchi police station demanding the arrest of Trinamul leader Abid Ali Miyan, accused of orchestrating the attack.
This is not the first time that a CPM leader faced Trinamul heat in Mathabhanga subdivision. On September 23, former CPM minister Dinesh Dakua had a narrow escape, after a party office in Sarkarerhat, 10km from Sitalkuchi, came under attack from Trinamul supporters. In a series of clashes in nearby Mathabhanga a day later, nearly 50 persons were injured, including some prominent Left leaders, while trying to enforce a bandh in the area to protest the attack on Dakua.
Today, the elections to the managing committee of Gopinath High School in Sitalkuchi, 70km from here, that began at 9 am.
Barman said he had been sitting inside the Bloc office, close to the school and almost adjacent to the police station, when the attack took place. “When Trinamul realised they were losing the elections, they attacked the party office. A mob of over a hundred hoodlums had lathis and spears with which they beat me up. My two security guards were injured while trying to protect me and Bloc leader Atiar Rehman,” MLA Barman said.
Rehman claimed at least 25 Left Front members were injured. Eight people, Rehman said, were admitted to the Sitalkuchi block hospital.
Barman said he was surprised at the role of police, who could not prevent the attack on him and the party office.
The additional police superintendent of the district, Amit P. Javalgi, said his force had to burst three rounds of tear-gas shells to quell the violence. The police confirmed that some people had to be hospitalised but could not confirm the number.
The president of the Cooch Behar Trinamul, Rabindranath Ghosh, said: “Harish Barman and his men are indulging in nothing but drama.”